Cellist and musicologist Joseph Gotoff is a committed chamber musician, scholar, and teacher. A highly versatile performer, his repertoire spans Baroque to the most Contemporary music, and he has had the privilege of premiering several important works in the chamber music repertoire, including Lowell Liebermann’s Piano Trio (2013). Joseph’s performances have garnered rave reviews from audiences and critics alike, who praise his “emotional intensity,” calling them “incredibly affecting.”
Last season brought Joseph to Prague, where he served as principal cellist for a new festival orchestra dedicated to performing Mozart’s orchestral and operatic masterpieces. While there he appeared in several major concert halls, including the Estates Theater and Esterhazy Palace, and will be returning for solo recitals in the 2015-2016 season. He was also invited to participate in the International Holland Music Sessions, where he performed in several recitals and participated in a publicly broadcast masterclass with Lluis Claret.
Highlights of Joseph’s 2015-2016 season include many exciting events and concerts. He continues to bring nonstandard music to life through a series of duo recital programs with violinist Zenas Hsu, which received rave reviews in previous seasons, and is a featured performer on the world-renowned Jordan Hall stage, with performances of Gunther Schuller’s Quartet for Violin, Viola, Cello and Flute scheduled for NEC’s gala event in memoriam of Mr. Schuller. Other important performances include solo cello recitals in NEC’s Brown Hall, and an all-Schubert program with pianist Victor Rosenbaum on the acclaimed Cambridge “Music for Peace” chamber series.
Joseph is also committed to promoting new and alternative forms of classical music. As a founding member of the Boston-based Phoenix Chamber Orchestra, he will bring both standard and modern repertoire to life in unconventional settings, targeting new, uninitiated audiences. Joseph is also a frequent performer for and supporter of Groupmuse, an organization founded in Boston that supports community-building through music. To that end he teaches cello at a charter school in Boston, working with students aged 10 to 18.
Joseph began playing the cello at age 10, and from an early age spent summers at chamber music festivals such as the Castleman Quartet Program and Kneisel Hall. In high school Joseph was one of the last students of the renowned cellist Orlando Cole, who encouraged him to pursue his love of chamber music. He went on to work closely with the Brentano String Quartet on the string quartet repertoire while studying evolutionary biology as an undergraduate at Princeton University. Instead of continuing on to medical school, Joseph decided to pursue a Master of Music degree from Mannes College of Music with Barbara Stein-Mallow.
Now based in Boston, Joseph is a doctoral student in cello performance at New England Conservatory, studying with Yeesun Kim, cellist of the Borromeo String Quartet. His solo cello masterclass appearances include Paul Katz, Lluis Claret, Joel Krosnick, Gary Hoffman, Pieter Wispelwey, Hai-Ye Ni, and others.
As a member of the Petrucci String Quartet, Joseph received a grant to study the manuscripts of Beethoven's string quartets, and was invited to perform at the opening of much-hailed Beethoven/Goya exhibit at the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. Joseph will continue his investigation of Beethoven’s manuscripts for his doctoral thesis work in conjunction with the Berlin State Library and the Moravian Museum in the Czech Republic.